By Hadley Heath
Liberals will be excited by this. A report from the Center for American Progress by Ruy Teixeira claims voting trends suggest that America will long be dominated by fans of big government.
All of his ducks seem to be in a row… except for one thing. Teixeira stakes his entire claim on one huge assumption: People who voted for Obama will vote for Democrats indefinitely.
Obama is a Democrat, I will give him that. But voting for Obama does not lock a voter into the socialistic, big government focus of today’s Democratic Party. Especially not now, when Obama’s approval rating has lost so much ground with unaffiliated voters and females. (Remember, in 2008, he won a majority of voters who identified themselves as unaffiliated or moderate and a strong majority of the female vote.)
Check out the president’s job approval ratings so far this summer, courtesy of Rasmussen Reports:
May 26, 2010: Among men, 20% Strongly Approve and 50% Strongly Disapprove. Among women, those numbers are 27% and 40%.
June 4, 2010: Forty-five percent (45%) of Democrats Strongly Approve while 70% of Republicans Strongly Disapprove. Among those not affiliated with either major party, 16% Strongly Approve and 46% Strongly Disapprove.
June 16, 2010: Forty-eight percent (48%) of Democrats Strongly Approve while 75% of Republicans Strongly Disapprove. Among those not affiliated with either major party, 12% Strongly Approve and 52% Strongly Disapprove.
About half of Democrats give the president the thumbs-up, but Republicans and unaffiliated voters strongly disapprove of his performance in more instances. Gallup also released a report Wednesday that said Obama’s approval rating is down from 56% last summer to 38% this summer among Independents. And now many more women strongly disapprove of Obama’s performance than strongly approve. So it’s clear that it’s possible to change one’s mind after an election. Regret is tough – but it shows hope for the right.
Furthermore, voter participation was abnormally high in 2008. Is that trend going to continue? Is Teixeira going to assume the same numbers at ballot boxes this November, and every election after that? Here’s a piece of demographic data: Latino Decisions, a polling firm, found that political interest in the Hispanic community is at an all-time low. And it might be Obama’s doing! Some blame the decline on a deep disappointment with the president’s unfulfilled promise to take up immigration reform.
While the president’s liberal policies (such as his unpopular health care reform) may be to blame for his low approval ratings, there may also be a reality check with voters as far as the economy. Either way, it’s hard to support someone who didn’t deliver on his promises. So for lovers of liberty, the Teixeira report shouldn’t be anything to worry about. Americans across many demographics are changing their minds about Obama and about the Democratic Party.
It’s not right to make the huge assumption that so many demographics that voted for Obama will continue to vote for Democrats. Yes they can, but no, they probably won’t.